What is Vayu Mudra?
The word Mudra in Sanskrit means a gesture or a seal. And in yogic terminology, mudra means movements made by the hands, wrists, shoulders, and elbows that emulate spiritual formations. These mudras are not only used during the practice of yoga but also in Buddhism and Jainism practices. The aim of contorting the hands in these gestures is to invigorate and balance the powerful energies and chakras, invoke consciousness, and improve the flow of prana in the body. One such mudra is the Vayu Mudra. The meaning of Vayu Mudra is air gesture. In yogic science, it is believed that our bodies are made up of five fundamental elements like the air, earth, water, fire, and space. Any imbalances, called doshas, in these elements are bound to lead to health problems. Out of all the doshas, Vayu dosha is considered to be the most harmful and is said to have a direct impact on your mental health along with organs like the lungs, colon, intestines, etc. Vayu Mudra has been used for thousands of years to improve the body's gastrointestinal functioning by regulating the air element in the body. With this mudra vayu is released effectively from the body helps in easing the digestive system. It can be done either in the seated asanas like Padmasana, Siddhasana, or Vajrasana. It can also be done while sitting in a chair and even while standing or lying down.
Who can do Vayu Mudra?
Anyone who wants to enjoy sustained health by preventing diseases and disorders, especially that of the digestive system should practice Vayu Mudra. It is especially advised for people who:
- Suffer from frequent gastrointestinal problems like constipation, bloat, gas, etc.
- Experience frequent chest pains and tightness.
- Suffer from frequent fevers, cold, and flu.
- Experience stress and anxiety.
- Suffer from pains and inflammation due to conditions like sciatica, gout, rheumatism, etc.
- Are diagnosed with Parkinsons disease.
- Feel sluggish and experience memory problems.
Who should avoid Vayu Mudra?
Certain conditions render Vayu Mudra ineffective. It should be avoided by people who:
- Are suffering from fever, cold, or flu.
- Have got injured in the fingers, wrist, elbows, arms, or shoulders.
- Are experiencing severe stress since Vayu Mudra may cause your body to overheat and cause palpitations.
- If you have been diagnosed with cardiac issues or hypertension, avoid practicing Vayu Mudra.
- If you are sleep-deprived or fatigued, avoid practicing Vayu Mudra.
How does Vayu Mudra help?
Vayu Mudra benefits are not only mental and physical but also spiritual. Here are some of the most important advantages of practicing Vayu Mudra regularly:
- One of the most important Vayu Mudra benefits is that by eliminating excess air from the body, it removes the root cause of several health problems instead of just helping superficially.
- This is a very effective mudra for digestion. It helps in removing gas from the stomach and intestines, helping in better digestion of food.
- It is a great mudra for stomach problems and helps in eliminating problems like bloating, constipation, flatulence, etc.
- Vayu mudra for gas is especially beneficial since it not only helps in preventing gas buildup but also in reducing its painful and discomforting symptoms.
- This yoga mudra for digestion helps in improving the functioning of the colon i.e. the large intestine.
- With this mudra Vayu is released along with toxins and harmful chemicals from the body.
- What makes it an effective mudra for digestion is that it helps in improving the functioning of the digestive system so that it can expel waste effectively.
- When coupled with pranayama or meditation, Vayu Mudra helps in reducing stress and anxiety. This has a direct impact on your digestive health, making it an important mudra for digestion and gastric issues.
- It helps in preventing several diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, osteoporosis, etc. Not only this, but it also helps in alleviating pain and inflammation occurring due to these conditions.
- Since Vayu Mudra calms you down, it helps in improving your sleep patterns reducing daytime fatigue and exhaustion.
- Vayu Mudra is especially beneficial for seniors for reducing joint pain and improving their flexibility and range of motion.
- Vayu Mudra is very effective for improving the digestion and sleep patterns of pregnant women.
- Vayu Mudra, when practiced along with Surya Namaskar yoga poses, helps in reducing pain in the neck, shoulders, arms, and back.
- Since it improves blood circulation, it helps in building your immunity, preventing asthma, and strengthening your muscles and joints. This also helps in regulating your body temperature and preventing lung disorders like shortness of breath, asthma, etc.
- Since the daily discomforts and pains reduce, you can manage your activities and work better. This has a direct impact on your performance and levels of productivity.
- Coupling Vayu Mudra with meditation induces a state of spirituality that helps you feel connected and grounded.
- When our body senses stress, it produces a hormone called cortisol. The elevated levels of this hormone cause weight gain and overeating. Vayu Mudra, by reducing our stress levels, regulates the production of cortisol, making it an effective gesture of yoga for weight loss.
- This is an effective yoga posture for kids to help remove stomach problems caused due to excessive consumption of starchy or acidic foods and drinks.
How is Vayu Mudra done?
Before we learn how to practice Vayu Mudra, we should know what each of our fingers represents:
- Thumb: Fire
- Index finger: Air
- Middle finger: Ether
- Ring finger: Earth
- Little finger: Water
The Vayu Mudra uses all these fingers and elements to regulate our energy and elements. This is how Vayu Mudra is performed:
- Sit in a comfortable position. This gesture can also be practiced while standing.
- Place your hands on your thighs or the knees with your palms pointing upwards.
- Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths.
- Slowly bend your index finger to touch the base of the thumb. Fold the thumb over the index finger to hold it firmly. All the other fingers must be stretched straight.
- You can couple this with pranayama or meditation.
- Start by practicing for 4-5 minutes, 2-3 times in a day.
What are some tips for practicing Vayu Mudra safely?
While its a very gentle yoga gesture, certain tips will help you perform Vayu Mudra safely:
- Never start doing this gesture on your own. It is important to learn it from an experienced trainer to understand its technique properly.
- Perform Vayu Mudra in a space thats clean and well-ventilated. Performing it in a cramped and noisy space will hinder your ability to meditate and gain its benefits.
- Dont perform Vayu Mudra if you have injuries in your hands, elbows, shoulders, or neck. You need to heal completely before starting to practice this gesture.
- Never press your fingers or pressure points forcefully.
- Dont perform Vayu Mudra if you are suffering from fever, cold, or flu.
- When experiencing severe stress or anxiety, practicing Vayu Mudra and meditation may cause your body to overheat and leave you with even more anxiety.
- Start slow and increase the duration gradually. Never push yourself.
- Be consistent without taking too many breaks to gain the maximum benefits.
- Vayu Mudra for digestion will be effective only when you lead a healthy and active lifestyle. Avoid smoking and drinking and consume light and healthy recipes to keep your digestive system healthy.
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